Why It’s Best to let the Police do the Questioning

From MPD:

“On today’s date [Sunday] at around 3:45PM, a citizen in the 1200 block of Linden Place, Northeast, questioned a subject regarding standing in front of an abandoned property in the block. The subject then approached the citizen and engaged in a physical assault. The citizen sustained facial injuries as a result of the assault.

First District personnel responded to the scene and apprehended the subject who was placed under arrest and charged accordingly.”

17 Comment

  • Not sure why MPD uses the terms “citizen” and “subject” here. Is this standard cop-talk?

    • I believe so (although it’s more common for MPD to use “complainant” for the person who reported the crime).

  • samanda_bynes

    reading this without knowing the conversation just makes it seem like the subject is a weird punching robot.

    he’s standing there in an abandoned lot, staring at the visage of forms reflecting a long forgotten time of drugs and crime; waiting for something to punch. the citizen comes by, questioning punching robot’s purpose – which is, as we know now, solely punching. unbeknownst to the citizen, naturally.

    “what are you doing here?”

    punching robot stares blankly into the man’s eyes – voids filled with a mixture of regret, anger, and a touch of sadness. he doesn’t know what these emotions are, but he knows how to recognize them. a dull hum persists in his head – the whirring of CPUs and machinery. punching robot hears again:

    “…are..you doing here?”

    he proceeds to punch the citizen, acting in the only natural way he can – through fists and flurries. the citizen runs away, only to turn and find the robot staring back into the abandonment as cops run up.

    ANYWAY. scary stuff! feel bad for the punchee, and glad it wasn’t anything more serious.

  • justinbc

    Make sure to link this next time someone makes a smart ass comment about getting to know your neighbors.

  • At least now the subject got arrested. If the cops had been called “to question” the subject, probably nothing would have happened.

    • Right the guy got arrested for assault. If police were called for a man standing in front of a building, there is no crime there. We are training our first precogs and hope to have them online by the fall.

  • A person was standing in front of a building which is perfectly legal, and the citizen felt the need to question them…did I miss anything?

    Seems like they’re lucky assault was all that happened. I do not condone violence, but I do not condone interfering with someone else’s rights either. Why do people in DC feel the need to involve themselves with this stuff?
    @justinbc, not exactly the same as knocking on a door and saying hello, is it? I don’t care to know my neighbors, but I don’t think people should be deterred because one citizen decided to question an unknown guy about why he was standing around.

    • I imagine there is a bit more to it than the cops describe. Go check out 14th and Irving sometime and see how many people are just “standing in front of buildings”. I’d love to find out what the hell all these guys do all day (other than drink, smoke weed and sell drugs) and how they support their livelihood, but I’m sure I’d be greeted with the same amount of violence.

  • I think the question revolves around the questioning. What did said citizen say to said punching robot? Was the question belligerent or aggressive, or was the question merely an offer of help? I believe PoP is right that aggressive questioning should be left to the police. But from the wording of the statement we have no way of knowing what happened there.

    Regardless, the punching robot clearly has a problem and should be sent to punching-robot re-eduation camp.

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